What Should My Roof Estimate Include?

Cover image for What Should My Roof Estimate Include?
Alex Sparks
Alex Sparks
Updated - February 22, 2024

Your roof protects your entire home, so when it comes to repairs or replacement, ensuring you get a fair and accurate estimate is crucial. Unfortunately, not all estimates are created equal. To avoid hidden costs and unexpected surprises, let's delve into what your roof estimate should include, how labor and time are factored in, and why discussing the estimate with the contractor is essential.

What Should Be Included in Your Roof Estimate:

An example of a roofing estimate
Roof Estimate Example
  • Detailed Materials List: Every shingle, underlayment, flashing, and ventilation component needed should be clearly listed with its specific brand, quantity, and unit price. This transparency allows you to compare materials and understand the quality included.
  • Labor Costs: The estimate should break down labor costs by task, including removal of old materials, installation of new materials, flashing work, and cleanup. Hourly rates or fixed prices per square foot should be clearly stated.
  • Tear-Off and Disposal: Does the estimate include the cost of removing your old roof and responsibly disposing of the debris? Don't get stuck with unexpected fees later.
  • Permits and Inspections: Are permit fees and associated inspections factored into the total cost? This ensures everything is done legally and according to code.
  • Timeline and Warranty: The estimate should outline a realistic timeline for project completion and clearly state the warranty terms covering materials and workmanship.

How Are Labor and Time Factored In?

Two roofers working on a roof
Roofing Labor

Labor costs can vary depending on the complexity of your roof, the chosen materials, and local wage rates. Reputable contractors will consider these factors and provide a breakdown of labor by task, ensuring transparency and avoiding hidden fees.

Time for completion will also depend on the size and complexity of your roof, weather conditions, and the contractor's schedule. The estimate should offer a realistic timeframe to manage your expectations and avoid potential delays.

Why Reviewing Your Estimate with the Contractor Is Crucial:

Two people reviewing a roofing estimate
Reviewing Estimate

Don't just skim through the estimate! Schedule a time to discuss it thoroughly with the contractor. Ask questions about material choices, labor breakdown, warranty details, and anything else unclear. This ensures you understand the scope of work, potential add-on costs, and are comfortable with the overall price.

Remember: The cheapest estimate might not be the best. Look for a contractor who offers a detailed, transparent estimate, competitive pricing, and is willing to answer your questions openly and honestly. By understanding what your roof estimate should include and taking the time to discuss it thoroughly, you'll avoid surprises and ensure your roof project is completed smoothly and within budget.

Bonus Tip: Get multiple estimates from qualified contractors to compare prices and services before making a decision.